Jan Hahn Book Reviews

Welcome back dear readers,
Well, it is July and the summer here in Denmark has been very changing during the last few weeks. Though the farmers around the country are pleased with the current weather.

Though, to the subject of this blog entry, books that are written by Jan Hahn. On the request of Janet Taylor, both friend and creative artist of front and back covers of several Austen inspired books during the last years I was asked to review two of Jan Hahn’s books, namely “The Child” and “The Journey.”

I started with “The Child.” It is a Pride and Prejudice story, first and foremost. My review is as follows;

“The Child” is another lovely story told by Jahn Hahn and narrated by Neil Roy McFarlane. Though this time, the story of Darcy and Elizabeth had a twist. Fitzwilliam Darcy returns to England, after two years abroad, and the first thing he sets his eyes upon in Hanover Square is the sight of Elizabeth, with a small child clinging to her skirts.
Who is the child? And is Elizabeth her mother? And just what has happened to the Bennet family since his fateful proposal in Hunsford? Follow along on the journey of discovery of who ‘the child’ is, and as Darcy and Elizabeth learn truths about each other and themselves, which leads to happiness for all. Neil’s voice was calm and made Darcy come alive in a way I have never experienced before. To state it plainly, it was a joy to listen to Jan Hahn’s story. I have personally given this audiobook/book 5 out of 5 stars.

Next, I started on “The Journey.” A book I have tried to return to, multiply times but never accomplished. But I started on the audiobook, narrated by Leena Emsley.

A journey to London is interrupted by the unexpected arrival of highwaymen, who overtakes the Bingley coach. Darcy and Elizabeth are taken as hostages and taken to a cabin in the woods. One of the highwaymen Mr Morgan takes an avid interest in Darcy and Elizabeth during their hostage-situation and release.
After the adventures in the woods, Darcy and Elizabeth return to town, where much drama ensues, many misunderstandings and all the whole feelings are growing, changing and maturing alongside Darcy and Elizabeth as they weather scandal, disgrace and the trials of the highwaymen.
Finally, during the celebratory betrothal dinner of Jane and Bingley, Elizabeth makes her way to Darcy to set the record straight after yet another misunderstanding. This event sets the course towards the happiness of our beloved couple. Lastly, the voice of Leena, makes Elizabeth and Darcy very sensitive, maybe even vulnerable, but mostly to each other throughout the story.
I have to admit to some struggle to get through the story, at certain parts, but the ending spurred me back into the plot. I have personally given this audiobook/book; 4 stars out of 5.

Thank you, Janet, for the opportunity to review these lovely books, and thank you, Jan for writing such great books which we as readers can emerge ourselves in when we need to escape the real world.

To end this blog entry, I am nearly halfway through my last practical period in a nursery in Copenhagen. I am due to finish my bachelor degree in June of 2020, after three and a half year. Therefore I am just three papers and four exams from finishing my degree! Wish me luck!

I will be back soon with my preparation blog entry for the Jane Austen Festival in Bath, and of course the blog entry about the festival.

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Gloved Heart by Charlotte Brentwood

Hello everyone!

It is summer again! I am on my last year at my university college, I finish at this time, next June! Imagine that!?!

But I was lately emailed by Charlotte Brentwood, and she wanted her book, “Gloved Heart” the II part in her Amberley series, and I, of course, accepted. So this is the blog entry about Charlotte’s sweet read.

GH cover

Review of the book;

“Gloved Heart” by Charlotte Brentwood is part II of her Amberley Series. It’s a true love story, full of anxiety, fears, doubts and, of course, love conquering all, in the end.
Note, although this is a ‘sweet’ read, there is some subject matter that may offend sensitive readers, including mention of rape and very mild violence and coarse language.

“Will she ever trust again?” That is the question of this lovely story.
The story starts with Amy Miller, still learning to be a mother, after a rape which left her pregnant, and unable to stand the touch of any man, and with the determination never to trust any man again. She was taken in by the wealthy gentry Fortescue family in the village of Amberley, who wishes to make her into a lady, the purpose is unclear, until later in the story. I will leave you, readers, with that as a clue.
Henry Russell is a character we quickly meet and grow to like since he is trustworthy and is quite ambitious, for a man of his time and rank. He is the son of a local farmer, in Amberley, and he has loved Amy all of his life. A chance encounter rekindles the flame of friendship and maybe more between them, – though his family wants nothing to do with Amy. A chance discovery of a secret might hold the key, both to Amy’s past but will also change them for good.

Near the end of the book, the villain of the book appears. Amy’s fear of her child being taken is horrified by the picture of the man who took her innocence and suddenly standing over her child. But Charlotte surprised me, with the fact that the villain did the right thing in the end.

As an experienced reader of the romance genre, I was quite quick to pick up on Charlotte’s hints both to the secret of Amy, and the hoped-for ending. Some of the plot lines did surprise me and yet delighted me. Clara, Mick, Cici and Mrs Fortescue was characters which were the main characters around Henry, Amy and little Benjamin.
“Gloved Heart” was sweet read, as Charlotte’s description so finely put it, but it was also a read of courage, trust and love.
I will admit to, being a little unsurprised by the ending, but then again, what is a good romance without the happy ending?

The ending made me laugh, and sigh a little – I was so pleased that Amy found her courage, and got her happy ending, with the man who deserves her.

Excerpt:

Amy was glad of the ride back to Briarwood. She was so weary she thought her legs might give way. Her emotions were close to the surface, threatening to brim over. Henry had touched on more than one nerve with his innocent line of questioning just now. He was right to wonder why a respectable couple such as the Fortescues, who she had hardly said a word to in her life, would stoop so low as to house an unwed mother when no one else wanted her. She had asked herself that question many times; it was reasonable for him to wonder too.

She wanted to believe his assertions that they wanted to make her more like them so she would belong. But she couldn’t bring herself to foster such a happy illusion; she was no more an innocent young girl who would see the best in people first. She knew most people were hiding something, and their actions were not always a good indicator of their motivations or intentions. In fact, sometimes they acted to deliberately deceive. She couldn’t believe the Fortescues would intentionally hurt her, as there was undeniably an altruistic motive for most of their actions. But their efforts to re-make her in the image of a lady were an affront to her very identity.

“Miss Miller?”

Amy turned to see Henry waiting for her on the cart. She laughed at him. “Come now, Henry, don’t address me as if you were my chauffeur. It’s only Amy, and it always has been.”

She stepped towards the box and he automatically offered his hand to help her up. She stared at it, dismayed.

It was perfectly natural for him to help her up into her seat, but despite her recent familiarity with him, she still could not stand to let their hands touch. She tried to fight the irrational terror which overtook her. Nothing bad would happen, it would be over in a matter of seconds and Henry was not going to abuse the situation, was he? But she could not bring herself to put her hands in his.

“I’m sorry,” she said.

He shook his head as if to dismiss her apology. “It’s nothing, just put your foot here, and hold on here, and you can pull yourself up.”

She nodded, did as he instructed, and managed to hoist herself up onto the seat.

Henry took up the reins. “Are you comfortable?”

She met his eyes and nodded again, startled by how close his face was to hers. “Thank you.” Her voice came out as a squeak and she immediately felt herself colouring. She focussed on the lane ahead as Henry brought the cart around and steered the mare down towards the road.

He sat as far as he could to the right of her while still maintaining control of the cart, but the seat was not very wide, so their thighs were still only inches apart. She could see his muscles flexing within his buckskin trousers. Suddenly she was unbearably warm.

Comfortable? Perhaps too comfortable.

She could not resist taking sly glances at him as they bounced along towards her home. The freckles across his nose had multiplied, giving him a boyish charm. His shock of fiery hair was tossed about in unruly waves like a turbulent sea. He caught her looking at him, and threw her a bashful smile, which she couldn’t help returning before forcing her eyes to her lap. She caught a whiff of his scent; he smelled of the grasses and earth and a rich, masculine aroma.

The motion of his hands guiding the reins caught her attention as they rounded a corner, and she took in his strong, toned forearms. He’d rolled his shirt up above his elbows, and even beneath all that fabric his upper arms bulged. His chest strained against his waistcoat. He was a robust working man, of course he would be… strapping. It was just that she’d never had such leisure to observe all this before. Or perhaps she had just never taken notice, never appreciated him in his masculinity. She’d been a slip of a girl when she’d last spent any length of time with him, without any notions of forming attachments. Now, she was all too aware of him, and the nearness of him. She began to feel a little light-headed, and her heart seemed to be pulsing through her entire body.

She hadn’t felt like this since… her breath quickened as a painful pang hit her heart. She’d rather not remember the last time.

“Amy? Are you all right?”

Henry was looking at her seriously as he guided the cart through the gates that led to Briarwood.

She tried to slow her breathing, but the rising panic could not be quelled.

The last time she had felt this way, it had nearly destroyed her. It had made her giddy, blind, defenceless. She’d been a gullible fool, and she had paid the price for her infatuation with her innocence.

Fear closed over her heart in a vice-like grip, and she clutched the sides of the seat with white knuckles. She could not explain to him, could not summon any words lest she begin to cry.

The cart came to a stop outside the house, and she leapt to the ground, nearly falling over.

“Amy!” Henry cried, dismounting in a flash and coming around to her side. “What on earth is the matter?”

She darted away from him, wishing she hadn’t let her fancies get the better of her, that she could go back to the simplicity of their recent friendship. Perhaps she still could if not tempted in such a way.

“Goodbye, Henry,” she called as she began walking away from him. “Thank you.”

Then she turned and took quick steps up to the front door, banging until she was granted admittance. Once inside, the house felt like a safe place for the first time. She was in no danger of being overcome by treacherous feelings here. She went to her room and closed the door, leaning back against it. She would have no reason to see Henry again, and it was just as well. She could not risk putting her heart in danger again.

Author bio:Amberley Gloved Heart
Charlotte developed serious crushes on a series of men from age fifteen: Darcy, Knightley, Wentworth and Brandon. A bookworm and scribbler for as long as she can remember, Charlotte always dreamed of sharing her stories with the world.

Earning a degree in communication studies, she was seduced by the emerging digital world and has since worked with the web and in marketing. She is a member of the Auckland chapter of RWNZ.

Now, a mother to an adorable human tornado, Charlotte is trying to find the time for reading, seaside walks, warbling at the piano and quaffing far too many hot chocolates.

Well, that was that for this time, I will be back, hopefully in July, with two reviews of two audiobooks, and, of course, with my Pre- Jane Austen Festival Blog Entry, and the Festival entry by the end of September. So for now, I will say, Au revoir.

Empire Dancing in Copenhagen

It was early in March when I realized that a dance group in Copenhagen was to be performing in a quite well-known author’s home, only twenty minutes away from my home! Today, the house is a museum for writers like; Grundtvig, H. C. Andersen, Rahbeck, Oehlenschläger and Thomasine Gyllenbourg, and sometimes during the summer, some of the students at the author school visits and are allowed to write in and around the house. The collection at the museum, was Jane Austen vs Thomasine Gyllenbourg.
So, today, on the 18th of May, my boyfriend and I made our way to The Bakkehus Museum, which is located quite near Copenhagen’s Zoo.

We did not have to wait long before the dance group was dressed in true Empire dresses and a single Highlander Gentleman. Since I am familiar with one of the ladies in the group, I could not help myself but introduce myself properly, even if I sadly was not dressed in Empire clothes myself, much to my dismay. The group was to dance 4 separate dances, which was danced between the late 18th century and the early 19th century.

The dances were as following;

Le Visites a Fridensburg (Bülow Collection 1787)

Mr Beveridges Maggot (Playford’s Dancing Master in 1695)

The Duke of Kent’s Waltz

Hole in the Wall

 Enjoy the videos;

 

 

 

 

While filming the group dancing, I was nearly bouncing on my feet, dying to dance the familiar dances again, September can’t come soon enough!  And if you are a hardcore Jane Austen fan, you will recognise one of the dances as the one, Darcy and Elizabeth dance at the Netherfield Park Ball in the 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice. 

After the lovely performances, I was lucky enough to get a word with Lisa, who is part of the group, and get her to answer a few questions for me, regarding their group and further activities during the summer months.

Questions 1; What made you start dancing 18th and 19th-century dances?
I was dancing in a renaissance group at the time, then in 2013, my sister told me of a German event, where we made period correct clothes and attended. Then in 2014, I discovered this group and started dancing with them and have danced with them for 5 years.

Question 2; What dance is the favourite in the group? 
I can’t decide. I can’t choose a favourite, we know around 50 dances. It depends on who you dance with as your partner, and on the day.

Question 3; Do you have other plans during the summer months?
On the 11th of June, Lisa is sewing in the Bakkehouse Museum in Frederiksberg in Copenhagen, while some of her gorgeous Empire Clothes are on display. And during one or two weekends in June Lisa can be seen at Selsø Castle, sewing. Lisa will also be at Selsø Castle, in North Sealand at the end of August where she will be talking of “When the Mistress Arrive.”
Then there is St. Alban’s also at the end of August, the Sundtold’s Market also in August in Helsingør.

Happier in her Friends than Relations

Hey Guys, Welcome back!

It’s April, nearly May, and I am heavily involved in exam preparations at my college university. Lately, I was contacted by Jayne Bamber, and agreed to review and talk of her Pride & Prejudice book, though I will say it was quite a surprise, and am quite delighted to know there is already a book II ready to be bought, it’s called; “Unexpected Friends and Relations” where characters from Emma and Pride and Prejudice will appear.

Cover Reveal[6175]

Review of “Happier in her friends than relations”
By Jayne Bamber

The scene sets at Longbourn when Mr Collins is visiting his ‘fair cousins’ and the announcement of the engagement between Jane to Mr Collins is made. To say that I was shocked would be an understatement – I was downright surprised at this turn of events at the beloved tale of society and love between classes. Jane married to Collins?! What was the world coming to?! I think I ended up screaming at the book, after reading that pairing coming together.

A visit to London, after she is driven from home after a continued conflict between herself and her ‘dearest’ sister, to their London relations, the Gardiners – where Elizabeth makes the acquaintance of Mr Charles Bingley, and yet again I was beyond surprised! Elizabeth and Bingley? I had never seen that pairing coming! A new family connection is also discovered through Elizabeth’s aunt Gardiner.

Then at a society ball, Elizabeth not only makes the acquaintance of Mr Darcy but also awakens her heart.

The plot thickens when the fact is revealed that Mr Darcy is MARRIED! Yes, dear readers, you are reading that right; married, bound in wedlock to another.

Drama ensues when a disaster threatens the Darcy family, where only the cunning of Anne De Bough, Darcy and Fitzwilliam can save the situation, from ending in exclusion of society, the reputation of Georgiana and the total ruin of the Darcy name.

Much hangs in the balance, when the plot thickens again, when several Austen characters present themselves throughout the plot, all from the; Dashwoods, Palmers, Willoughby, Mrs Jennings, The Fitzwilliams, De Boughs and even Sandition’s characters appear. Especially Rebecca Fitzwilliam makes Elizabeth Bennet and Marianna Brandon a very strong ally throughout the book, which helps our favourite heroine and her friend sample the best of London, Derbyshire and Kent. After much drama, several of Austen’s beloved characters get their happy ending, including Darcy and Elizabeth.

To say I was surprised, shocked, dismayed and delighted would be an understatement – it was a delight to read a book where several Austen characters appeared, was related and connected in one way or another.

Author Bio;

Jayne Bamber is a life-long Austen fan and a total sucker for costume dramas. Jayne read her first Austen variation as a teenager and has spent more than a decade devouring as many of them as she can. This, of course, has led her to the ultimate conclusion of her addiction,Jayne Bamber Author Pic[6176] writing one herself.

 

Jayne’s favourite Austen work is Sense and Sensibility, though Sanditon is a strong second. Despite her love for Pride and Prejudice, Jayne realizes that she is no Lizzy Bennet, and is, in fact, growing up to be Mrs Bennet more and more each day.

 

After years of dating Wickhams, Collinses, and the occasional Tilney-that-got-away, Jayne married her very own Darcy (tinged with just the right amount of Mr Palmer) and the two live together in Texas with a pair of badly behaved rat terriers, and a desire to expand their menagerie of fur babies.

Thank you for allowing me to talk and review your book, Jayne, it was a pleasure.

So, this is it for this time around, but I’ll be back sooner, rather than later. I have already agreed to talk of Jan Hahn’s two books; “The Journey” and “The Child” so look out for my blog again during the early summer, and wish me luck with my two exams.

The Flight Path LESS Travelled

Welcome Back Dear Readers!

I am back! Uni is killing me, obviously 🙄 but that’s uni for you. But lately, I was contacted by Leigh Dreyer, an author who I hosted here on my blog, last year with her first book; “The Best Laid Flight Plans”, and Leigh asked if I would be interested in hosting her again, this time with her second book and the sequel to her first book. And naturally, I couldn’t refuse her.

Welcome back, to one of my favourite modern P&P authoresses; Leigh Dreyer, with her second book; “The Flight Path LESS Travelled”

The Flight Path less travelled 2DREYERebook (1)
Review;

“The Flight Path Less Travelled” picks up nearly where book 1 ends, and it was good to be back in “familiar” surroundings of Netherfield, with the newlywed Bingleys and Darcy and Elizabeth, after the accident.

I was quite surprised to see a character from another beloved Austen book, appear as a flight doc, more specifically Elizabeth’s doctor! Namely the charming if roguish Willoughby from Sense and Sensibility – and just to put it mildly, Darcy dislikes him, immediately – not that that was such a surprise since Darcy is head over heels for Elizabeth. And besides, I didn’t like him either, to be honest!

Drama ensues at Longbourn, when old history is dredged up, after Elizabeth’s accident, which makes Elizabeth’s life turn upside down.

With a decision about her future, will Elizabeth follow her ambition or will she follow her heart?
Leigh has answered some questions for me, so enjoy the authoress Q&A;

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I work as a speech pathologist, currently in the Las Vegas area. I work both in person at a charter middle/high school and a long term acute care facility and doing teletherapy (which I absolutely love) from my home. Yes. I have three jobs plus writing because I apparently enjoy being crazy. I write while my kids take naps, during teletherapy breaks, and at night. I have an incredible husband who is a pilot in the Air Force and two amazing kids. My son is four and my daughter is two. Both my husband and I are children of Air Force pilots which makes for fun family get-togethers. Needless to say, I very rarely have to do a lot of plane-related research.

2. Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

Elizabeth Bennet has just gone through tremendous trauma at the end of The Best Laid Flight Plans and now she has to get back up, brush herself off, and push forward. In the original Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth faces a lot of invisible enemies (marriage or lack thereof, the entailment, etc.), but I wanted to see where she would take me when her enemies were very much physical. Would she be strong and fight?

3. Which writers inspire you?

Jane Austen is the obvious answer, but I’m also inspired by so many JAFF authors. People like (in no particular order) Linda Wells, Joy King, Diana J Oaks, Maria Grace, Abigail Reynolds, Jenetta James, Karen Cox, Beau North, Jan Hahn, Elizabeth Ann West, Rose Fairbanks, etc. inspire me to fall more deeply in love with characters I already enjoy. I also love Diana Gabaldon, Neil Gaman, Aled Hossein, Tom Wolfe, William Makepeace Thackeray, Agatha Christie, and CS Forester.

4. What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

After going through The Best Laid Flight Plans I changed the ending because I just wasn’t ready for it to end. I wanted to see what happened next and leave the door open to really learn more about Mr and Mrs Bennet, Colonel Fitzwilliam, etc. I needed another book or two or three for the story to end for me.

5. This book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?

The Flight Path Less Traveled is book two in a series of three planned books: The Best Laid Flight Plans, The Flight Path Less Traveled and Came a Flight Gently. The first book is a P&P variation whose storyline closely follows the events of P&P. The next two are original continuations although you will definitely see other favourite Austen characters and events as the story continues. Each book is an altered line from a poem that I find meaningful and that I feel speaks to the tone of the book I wanted to write.

6. What is your favourite movie and why?

Gone With The Wind. Partly because I am an eighty-five-year-old woman trapped in a thirty-year-old’s body (please see my love for all classic film, 1940s jazz and classical music, and other habits like insisting my family eat at the table) I love the costumes, the romance, the huge sets, the language. I love it all. Scarlett is one of my all-time favourite characters. She doesn’t let other people tell her she can’t achieve. She needs to take care of her family, so she does, in whatever way she can. I find her strong, capable head something I would love to emulate, even if she is a little stupid with her heart.

7. What advice would you give to your younger self?

Just do it. Jump in. You can figure it out while you’re doing it, but if you wait until you understand every nuance of a task, years will pass and it still won’t be done.

8. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write. Also, edit. I recently had a friend who decided her NaNoWriMo draft was ready for publication. She had not even re-read it. Yikes. I tell every aspiring writer I know to write and then let someone read it and critique it. Critique can be hard to accept, but you’ll only get better.

BLURB;

In this modern Pride and Prejudice continuation and sequel to The Best Laid Flight Plans, 2nd Lieutenant Elizabeth Bennet and Captain William Darcy are facing trials after the events of Elizabeth’s last flight. Darcy’s proposal lingers between them as Elizabeth becomes almost single sighted to her rehabilitation and her return to pilot training. A secret is revealed to Elizabeth about Mr. and Mrs. Bennet’s past that throws all she has known to be true into a tail spin. The romance between our hero and heroine begins to blossom through military separations, sisterly pranks, and miscommunications. Can Darcy and Elizabeth come together or will flying in the Air Force keep them apart?

Leigh has been also been a dear and allowed us to view, and read the first two chapters of her book, though forgive me for not posting ch2 as well.

CHAPTER 1; A Flight Path LESS Travelled.

Rain. She shuddered with a sudden chill as a raindrop slid down the back of her shirt. The dark, heavy clouds settled around her, prickling her skin. Her eyes searched for shelter from the storm and spotted the familiar stone house in the distance. Running toward it, her shoes heavy in the mud, she felt herself pick up speed. Soon she found herself on a winding, paved driveway.
To her left was a small stream that emptied into a quaint pond. Raindrops rippled at the banks. It’s a great day if you’re a duck. She smiled as a single drake waddled from the bank, then glided effortlessly into the pool.
The house loomed in front of her and she soon found herself at the door. She knocked loudly and waited, rubbing her arms in an attempt to stay warm.
There was no answer.
She knocked again, much louder this time, and looked around the entrance for a doorbell of some kind. She shuffled anxiously from one foot to the other, shivering, and hoping that someone would answer the door.
No answer.
She pounded against the door, then walked back a few steps, looking at the windows in the home, trying to ascertain if anyone was there.
Finally, she saw him. He was as handsome as she had ever seen him. Dressed in a sweater and jeans with his hair perfectly in place, he looked out at her through the window and smiled. Warmth immediately flooded her chest and she felt alive. She needed him.
She stretched out her hands and he came to her with a thought. She looked into his dark eyes and her stomach turned in anticipation of his touch. He brushed her cheeks with his thumbs, pulling her face gently to him, touching his lips to hers. As he kissed her, his fingers combed through her wet hair and ran down her back. Every part of her touched by him was on fire, electric somehow, and every sensation was heightened by the contrast with the cold rain around them.
She wrapped her arms around his neck and deepened the kiss that seemed to touch her very soul. The raindrops ran down their faces and she sighed. Warm, content, happy, and in love. She closed her eyes gently, letting her body take over. He moaned in response, a deep vibration against her chest and suddenly―
Second Lieutenant Elizabeth Bennet shook her head, clearing her thoughts. She felt the world around her vibrate when the propeller sprang into motion. She stretched her legs to move the rudders and turned onto the runway. The number one plane was thirty feet diagonally ahead of her and, as the lead nodded to roll forward, she pushed the throttle full. Gravity pushed her body into the seat as she took off. The sun beat on the cockpit glass and sweat dripped down the neck of her flight suit.
Elizabeth loved flying, soaring from cloud to cloud. Sometimes she imagined she was in one of the old biplanes and could let the wind whip her scarf and long dark hair behind her. She would dance the foxtrot through the skies. When she was younger, she read a book about the wing walkers of the 1920s, and since then, she had wanted to stand on the wings of a plane and feel the rush of the sky around her. She sighed as she took one long look out of the cockpit and watched the powerful clouds eddy as she rocketed through.
This check ride was important. It was the last bastion to conquer before she could track to the shiny, fast, sexy T-38s. She had wanted to fly the jet since she started pilot training and then move on to fighter jets in the real world. Maybe the F-22? Maybe even the F-35 if it was not still grounded by the time she graduated in six months.
She took a deep breath. Her oxygen mask pressed on the bridge of her nose uncomfortably. She repositioned it and remembered where she was and what she needed to accomplish.
The number one plane in front of her rocked its wings and Elizabeth pushed the stick firmly to the left, completed a roll, and watched the world spin through the glass cockpit. Over the intercom, she heard a familiar instructor pilot: “Nice job, Bennet. Keep it a little tighter in the formation and watch your altimeter. Straight and level.”
Elizabeth felt unexpectedly nervous. Her pulse quickened and roared in her ears. Ignoring her emotions, she trained her mind back to the task at hand. She watched the number one, moved her wing a little closer to maintain tight formation mere feet from the wing of the other plane, and waited anxiously for the next signal.
Abruptly, the stick was pushed forward. She started, her heart pumping rapidly. She grabbed the stick with both hands, planted her feet to the floor, and strained against the metal to pull it back into neutral position.
“Straight and level. Straight and level.” The haunting echo began to repeat in her headset. She pulled the stick back again and again. She pushed her legs down on the rudders forcing the muscles in her thighs to contract. Her boots slipped on the metal surfaces as she desperately tugged. Her heart pounded in terror as she watched the ground zoom closer.
“Mayday! Mayday! Mayday! MOA 6. Nuke 62. Going down,” Elizabeth shouted into the radio. The harness pushed painfully against her breast while she changed from correcting the plane to saving herself from her horrifying dive toward the ground. She saw the trees growing bigger and bigger in her view and prayed hysterically for a miracle.
Oh God—don’t let me die.
His handsome features and serious mien sprang unbidden to her mind. Darcy.
Nausea hit and she vomited into her mask. It was crushed to her face with the G-forces and she dug her nails into her cheeks to peel it off. She could not breathe. She needed to breathe. Through tears, she searched her panel for the altimeter and finally ripped off the mask. Two thousand feet. She could only see blackness.
She was blind. Her stomach churned, warning her the plane was still falling. Opening her eyes, she saw the ground screaming toward her. It was close enough to touch. She reached out her hand, fingers stretched. She blinked and the ground was far away and she had time to think.
I have to get out of this plane! She did not want to die. She was running through Longbourn’s backyard and pushing Jane on the swing. Mary playing the piano. Her father reading to Elizabeth while seated on his lap in the comfy chair of his office. Her crying mother receiving a triangular folded flag. A uniformed soldier playing “Taps” on a trumpet. Her sisters weeping over a casket that contained nothing but the charred and blackened bits of the former Lieutenant Elizabeth Bennet.
“Straight and level! Straight and level!” Who was shouting at her? Did they not see her trying? Pull up, damn it! Pull up!
She felt between her thighs for the yellow ejection handle. She had to get out of this careening metal coffin. Where was the handle? She was blind and no amount of blinking would bring the ground back into her view. She searched furiously for the spot between her knees where she had been trained to pull. Her helmet was filled with vomit. She tried to open her eyes and search for the distinct looped handle. One hand continued to pull at the stick in a weak, desperate attempt to right the plane while the other roved under the seat in an attempt to locate her only chance of survival.
“Straight and level! Straight and level,” repeated the scratchy voice in her helmet.
The ground was coming up fast again. Every movement of her body was strangely slow and halted like she was moving through mud. Her thoughts seemed alien as she searched through her emergency procedures checklist to find the correct protocols for “hurtling to demise.” In desperation, she grasped at the stick and made another weak attempt to pull up. Her arms exhausted from the strain, she screamed. She looked once more at the ground through the sweat and vomit and closed her eyes, bracing for impact.
“Elizabeth!”
The plane shook Elizabeth violently as they continued to shoot through the sky. Elizabeth pondered the movement of time and was surprised that it took so long for her to hit. It felt like she had been falling forever. Turbulence would not kill her. Turbulence did not kill anybody. All it ever did was frighten passengers on 747s. She was not a flight attendant walking through the aisle serving Diet Cokes and pretzels. She was a pilot. She had studied for this. She had to find that ejection handle.
“Elizabeth!”
Elizabeth screamed again. The stick would not budge. She could not find the ejection handle. She felt the plane rock, and her mind jolted back to her vision of the dirt below. It was close. No more than ten seconds. She reached out a hand to touch it.
Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one.
Darkness.
“Elizabeth! Please wake up!”
Elizabeth shook. She must have hit. She waited for the scent of exploding fuel and burning flesh she knew would come and the sharp metallic taste of blood that would likely accompany it. She expected the crash to be painful, instead, she was shaking. She felt the shoulder straps of her harness push against her as she continued to struggle. Suddenly, she was smothered by her helmet, her face crushed inside her mask, her nose pinched.
She took a gasping breath.
Her eyes blinked open to see a man’s chest hovering above her. Her eyes fluttered and her breath continued to come in gulps, burning in her throat as she pushed away, ready to claw the man holding her down.
Her hands grappled with something besides her head and next to her body strangling her movement; she had expected grass but found only soft fabric. After another moment, her brain registered the sheets and pillow of her bed.
Darcy looked down at her; his dark eyes creased in concern.
“I was crashing,” Elizabeth said, her voice rough, eyes darting around her bedroom at Netherfield. The green curtains. The dark dresser. The potted plant she had received in the hospital was dying; she had liked to look at it in the rehab facility. Darcy loomed above her.
“How did I get here?” She still felt the sickening lurch in her stomach of the plane dropping. She swallowed hard.
“You’re at Netherfield. Jane’s just in the other room.” Elizabeth’s skin prickled as Darcy’s deep voice vibrated in his chest when he spoke. Her head was cloudy with the sensations of her flight, and she found it difficult to reason. “Elizabeth, breathe and think. What felt real?”
She took one shaky breath. “The crash. I couldn’t find the ejection handle. It wasn’t there.” Her voice cracked and she felt hot tears spill down her cheeks, and she became furious at her inability to control herself. “It wasn’t there! Who the hell doesn’t put an ejection handle in a plane? What kind of idiot was on maintenance? How on earth do they expect someone to survive without an ejection handle?”
“Honey,” Darcy began, pulling Elizabeth to his chest. She pushed him away.
“Don’t ‘honey’ me. I couldn’t get out! I could have been killed! The stick was stuck forward—I couldn’t lift it…”
She could feel the hysteria begin to take over once more, and she took a gulping breath, letting it out slowly.
Darcy leaned down to look directly into Elizabeth’s eyes. They looked wild and vulnerable. He reached down to rub her arms, then slowly pressed her petite frame to his chest.
Darcy whispered into her ear. “You got out. You’re here. I’ve got you. You’re all right. We’re here at Netherfield. The crash was weeks ago; do you remember? You didn’t want to go home for fear your mother’s nerves would smother you. Jane and Bingley are married and are sleeping in the other room. You were screaming, so I came.”
“Oh god.” Elizabeth looked around. Find two things you can see. The window. The dresser. Find one thing you can feel. The sheets. Find one thing you can smell. Sandalwood and pine…Darcy—he always smells fresh. She started over. She was in pajamas, sitting in her bed; she could feel the cotton. Darcy was shirtless but wearing sweatpants. She suddenly felt a warmth in her stomach before she remembered their precarious arrangement. She loved him, and he knew she loved him. He had loved her much longer. After one incredible kiss in the hospital just after the crash, they had barely touched each other. They were both too anxious to give the other space to figure things out. Now on the third night home from hospital and rehab, she had to embarrass herself by freaking out. What must he think of me?
She was humiliated and tired—exhausted—if she was honest with herself. She also realized with a sudden blush that perhaps this ugly old shirt from high school and yoga pants with a hole in the knee should be retired as her nightwear of choice. She was frightened but, as she relaxed into Darcy, the feeling of her body against his was the only bearable thing in her existence, so she concentrated on that.
She slowly shook off the remnants of her nightmare, and her thoughts began to clear like a fuzzy TV channel coming in tune. Netherfield. She was at Netherfield. It was too stressful to go home to Longbourn Inn with her mother checking on her every ten minutes and her father shutting himself in his office to avoid her mother. As Mary, Kitty, and Lydia were equal parts annoying and dreadful, plus the constant hum of guests, Jane offered her new home. Elizabeth had taken up residence directly upon release from the rehabilitation center.
Her therapist had said to expect nightmares and flashbacks. Thoughts of the dream brought feelings of shame for being so weak, and she felt a slow blush creep up her cheeks and into her hairline.
“I’m completely embarrassed. Of course—none of it is real. I can’t believe I made you get up.” She let out a long, exasperated sigh and looked around the room, pushing away from him, much gentler this time, and combing through her matted curls with her fingers. “Go back to sleep. You have to fly tomorrow.”
“Elizabeth, it’s no big deal.”
“It is a big deal. You have to fly. You can’t show tired after dealing with me being a baby all night.”
Darcy shrugged and sat next to her in the bed. “It’s a less demanding sortie. Besides, I don’t show till ten. I’ve got plenty of time.” He reached out and gently smoothed the frizz and tangles that had overtaken her hair from her thrashing. “Want me to stay with you a little while?” He offered his arms. She hesitated, then tentatively moved into them.
Elizabeth’s mind was calm as she inhaled his scent and felt the warm, calming pressure of his arms enfolding her. She released a breath she did not know she had been holding, relishing the quiet and the steady beat of his heartbeat. Thump-thump. Thump-thump. She matched her breath to his, breathing deeper and slower than normal. Her eyelids drooped, and she relaxed into his arms.
***
“Elizabeth?”
“Hmm?”
“Want me to stay?”
“Hmm…”
“Nod or shake your head?”
Elizabeth did neither as she nestled closer to his chest. Darcy felt her body relax against him and he smiled. He pulled her close and leaned against the headboard where he was found moments later by Jane. Darcy opened his eyes slowly and looked at Elizabeth’s sister as she walked clumsily into the dark room.
Darcy pressed his finger to his lips and Jane nodded at him.
“Is she back asleep?” she whispered.
Darcy nodded.
“Go ahead and lay her down. I’ll stay with her.”
He moved Elizabeth’s sleeping form onto the pillow and maneuvered himself out of her embrace. They needed to figure out their relationship soon because he hated leaving her like this. He was sure the Air Force would have a reprimand for living in the same house, regardless of their intimate relationship or lack thereof. It was why he had proposed in the first place at Rosings during the hearing for the Base Closure Committee without so much as a first date! He did not want to tempt a court-martial for either of them. She sighed and snuggled into her pillow, her hair tumbled over her shoulders. Darcy looked at her again before leaving the room as quietly as Jane had entered.
***
Jane lay down by her sister, grateful that she had the next day off from work. She and Charles had only been home from their honeymoon for two weeks and, while Charles understood Jane’s need to care for Lizzy, it was difficult on their new relationship. Lizzy had come straight to Netherfield, not even stopping at home for clothes. Darcy had been insistent, and Jane knew Longbourn would drive Lizzy crazy within forty-eight hours.
Jane closed her eyes and tried to relax by reviewing her list for the next day. Clean. As Caroline had refused to keep up with any task she thought below her. Sort out trimming the trees on the road to the house. Because Caroline had neglected them the fall before. Take Lizzy to the doctor. Get groceries… Caroline had not cooked a meal since the wedding! Jane added “speak to Charles about his sister—again” to her list.
Lizzy must be in serious pain. Jane had never so much as broken a bone, but Lizzy had broken half of her body. Now with the nightmares, Jane had no idea how to comfort her sister. While Lizzy had been in the hospital and then rehab, Jane had been able to get things done for her job and around the house, but now she feared that Lizzy’s care would come with a list she could never accomplish. Her sister’s pain was not a line item she could simply cross off, and it was not something she could take away.
Lizzy kicked Jane, and Jane grunted and rolled over. She had forgotten Lizzy kicked in her sleep, and the cast slamming into her shin was painful. Thank goodness, Charles slept like the dead. Jane did not miss this particular aspect of her sister’s many charms, but soon, Jane drifted off.
***
The morning arrived soft and new. Elizabeth sighed deeply as she looked out the window at the bashful rays shooting through her curtains. Despite several casts and slings, she was able to sit up and, with assistance, move around the house. They were all to be removed in the next week and she was anxiously awaiting further independence. The doctors had told her it was good that she had been healthy and active before the crash otherwise she would have had a very different outcome. She would like to lie in bed for a few more hours reading a book but she desperately needed to go to the bathroom.
Elizabeth turned her head and found Jane’s blonde hair sticking out from under the sheet covering her sister’s face. She looks like an especially comfortable pineapple. How anyone could sleep like that without being suffocated, Elizabeth would never know. She nudged Jane gently and startled when Jane sprang into action.
“Lizzy! Are you okay? Do you need a drink? Should I get Will or Charles?”
“Shh…” Elizabeth held her finger to her lips. Jane’s eyes were wide. “I’m fine. I just need to use the bathroom.”
Jane relaxed and rolled off the bed, yawning and stretching. “I’m going to go back to Charles for a bit before he has to go to work.”
“Okay. I’m up. Tell Charles thanks for letting me borrow you last night.”
Jane scratched her head and stumbled sleepily out of the room, mumbling. “Sure thing.”
Elizabeth got herself to and from the bathroom with the aid of her old lady cane and the handicapped bars in the hallways that Darcy had installed before she came home. After what seemed a painful eternity, she made her way to the living room where she reclined on the couch and read.
Within the hour, Jane bustled in the kitchen; Charles joined her soon after, laughing and talking about his plans for the day. Caroline stalked into the room, shot darts at the happy couple (and Elizabeth), retrieved her coffee cup, and slinked back up the stairs away from the felicity flowing about downstairs. Elizabeth watched all from a spot on the couch, grateful she was not at Longbourn, listening to the screeches of her sisters. She closed her eyes and soon fell asleep, lulled by the sounds of utensils on plates and conversation humming from the kitchen.


Author Bio;

Leigh Dreyer is a huge fan of Jane Austen variations and the JAFF community. She is blessed to have multi-generational military connections through herself and her husband, who she met in pilot training. She often describes her formative years in this way: “You know the ‘Great Balls of Fire’ scene in Top Gun (‘Goose, you big stud!’), where Goose and Meg Ryan have their kid on the piano? I was that kid.” Leigh lives with her pilot husband, a plane-obsessed son, a daughter who will one day be old enough to watch romantic movies with her, and another little one expected in September 2019.

The Best Laid Flight Plans Links
US link: https://amzn.to/2IkAWTF
UK link: https://amzn.to/2SfGA9m

Contact Information
Author Name: Leigh Dreyer
Email: leighdreyerauthor@gmail.com
Facebook: Leigh Dreyer
Facebook Page: @leighdreyerauthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/leighdreyer
Website: http://www.leighdreyer.com/

 

Hi Guys, that was this for this time! But do not despair, I will be back in April with Jayne Bamber, and her P&P books. So I hope to see you again soon. Cheers!

Edinburgh 2019

Edinburgh 2019

Another year has passed, and so have the third annual Regency Ball in Edinburgh!

After a horribly bumpy ride up to Edinburgh from Copenhagen, due to turbulence, I arrived 1h30 minutes later to find my friend and regency sister Christin waiting for me. We started with heading straight for a book shop, surprise 😂😂

Saturday started with breakfast, a walk to find Jamie from Outlander and his print shop from season 3 of the famous book/tv series – where Clair arrives and Jamie faints by the mere sight of his wife.


After a walk to Flourish and Blotts, where books were bought, and wands admired. Then we walked to the Assembly Rooms, where the dance practice, for the evening’s ball was going on. Here our friend Elaine arrived, we had only just heard that she was going to attend a few days before, due to something at home. So, we learned a new dance, for the same evening’s ball. After two hours’ worth of dancing practice, we made our way to our apartment.  20190309_172107150_iOS

In the apartment, we hurried to eat a bit, prepare and redress for the ball, and style hair, all within small two and half small hours.

The ball was as always, a great success, with many familiar faces, a few new ones and the famous Dancing Master Stuart Marsden, who called the dancing, in a mix of English and French.
A few new dances appeared, and a lot of laughter ensued. Two familiar faces made me smile, a dancing and music Master Andrew Rawe and his lovely girlfriend, I got a glance at her dance card, and Mr Rawe had signed for THREE dances, so I could not help myself but ask if there was any news coming from them, the only response I got was smiles from them both, and an answer, which made me smile.

The first four dances, with both old friends, and acquaintances alike, dinner happened. A delicious Cog Au Vin and a delightful chicken in a white sauce with mushrooms. Dinner conversation flowed at our table, about Australia, the ball and news of people around the table.

The ball was again a grand success, and many congratulated Talitha on an event, well done, though sadly she was ready to hand the reins over to someone else. Which I hope happens, since the ball is one of the highlights of my spring calendar. I was dancing twice with an old friend, by the name of Jack, you know who you are – and to say it lightly, he is a horrible flirt, a good friend and a wonderful dancer. To use a Regency term, he is a “disgrace” hehe.

Saturday night was continued by a small group of ball-goers at “The Dome”, a fancy bar, quite near to the Assembly Rooms. Where gossip, proper catch-up and small talk was done. A few drinks were consumed, and the evening ended on quite a pleasant note, with Elaine, Christin and I hitting our beds.

Sunday, it rained cats and dogs, not a surprise for Scotland, so Christin, Elaine and I dressed in civilian clothes, and made our way to the Georgian House, with a stop at Waverley Bus Station, where I dropped my suitcase. Once at the Georgian House, our acquaintances arrived in full Regency clothes. Elaine, Christin and I then borrowed dresses from the Georgian House, so we could dance alongside our friends. 20190312_131543000_iOS

A quick drive through some of the city, in a carriage, in the company of Talitha. The girls and I made our way past Waterstone’s, a book shop, where we took tea and Christin and I bought a bag each, a Harry Potter themed on, hehe. Then I sadly had to make my way towards Edinburgh Airport for my flight home to Denmark.

I will be back next week, with a returning authoress, Leigh Dreyer and her new book. So hang tight, see you next week. Cheers.

 

 

Through A Different Lens

Welcome Back Dear Readers,

This time I am visited by a returning authoress, who visited my very own blog, last year with her book, “The Assistant” namely the lovely Riana Everly. different lens cover 450x675[4886]

Welcome Back Riana!

Riana’s new book, “Through a Different Lens” is A tale of second glances and second chances

Elizabeth Bennet has disliked the aloof and arrogant Mr. Darcy since he insulted her at a village dance several months before. But an unexpected conversation with a startling turn of phrase suddenly causes her to reassess everything she thought she knew about the infuriating and humourless gentleman.

Elizabeth knows something of people who think differently. Her young cousin in London has always been different from his siblings and peers, and Lizzy sees something of this boy’s unusual traits in the stern gentleman from Derbyshire whose presence has plagued her for so long. She approaches him in friendship and the two begin a tentative association. But is Lizzy’s new understanding of Mr. Darcy accurate? Or was she right the first time? And will the unwelcome appearance of a nemesis from the past destroy any hopes they might have of happiness?

!!Warning!! This variation of Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice depicts our hero as having a neurological difference. If you need your hero to be perfect, this might not be the book for you. But if you like adorable children, annoying birds, and wonderful dogs, and are open to a character who struggles to make his way in a world he does not quite comprehend, with a heroine who can see the man behind his challenges, and who celebrates his strengths while supporting his weaknesses, then read on! You, too, can learn what wonders can be found when we see the familiar through a different lens.

Authoress Bio of our dear Riana! riana everly head shot[4887]

Riana Everly was born in South Africa but has called Canada home since she was eight years old. She has a Master’s degree in Medieval Studies and is trained as a classical musician, specializing in Baroque and early Classical music. She first encountered Jane Austen when her father handed her a copy of Emma at age 11 and has never looked back.

Riana now lives in Toronto with her family. When she is not writing, she can often be found playing string quartets with friends, biking around the beautiful province of Ontario with her husband, trying to improve her photography, thinking about what to make for dinner, and, of course, reading!
sammy gardiner[4885]
Riana’s second novel, The Assistant, was awarded the Jane Austen Award by Jane Austen Readers’ Awards, and her debut novel, Teaching Eliza, was listed on a list of 2017 Favourite Books on the blog Savvy Verse & Wit. For both of these honours, she is delighted and very proud!

You can follow Riana’s blog athttps://rianaeverly.com/blog/, and join her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/RianaEverly/) and Twitter (@RianaEverly). She loves meeting readers!

Dear Readers, I have put some questions to Riana, about her book, and here they are;

  1. How did you come up with a Darcy/Gardiner who have the Asperger’s syndrome?

I had thought for a long time that Jane Austen’s Mr. Darcy has Asperger’s Syndrome, which is a type “high-functioning” autism. A lot of what we see of him in Pride and Prejudice fits with the traits of Asperger’s. More importantly, his own words at Rosings really resonate with one of the main characteristics of the autism spectrum: “I certainly have not the talent which some people possess of conversing easily with those I have never seen before. I cannot catch their tone of conversation, or appear interested in their concerns, as I often see done.” And Elizabeth just goads him and complains that he doesn’t try enough. But what if he really cannot understand all those unspoken pieces of communication that most of us take so much for granted?

I then wondered what would happen if Elizabeth did realize that Darcy isn’t just being a jerk but has some issue that makes socializing difficult. The best way she would know this is if she had someone she loved with a similar condition. Knowing the close relationship between Austen’s Lizzy Bennet and the Gardiners, I imagined a cousin with autism, who had taught her as much as she taught him. And this is how Sammy Gardiner came into being.

  1. Do you have personal experience with this “condition”?

These days, with increasing awareness of autism, almost everybody knows someone on the spectrum. I could name all sorts of friends with children somehow affected, some very lightly, others quite profoundly. In my family, my son was diagnosed with Asperger’s several years ago. He is just on the very edge of the spectrum, and most of the time seems perfectly “normal,” but even there I can see the challenges he has with some aspects of non-verbal communication, such as tone or voice or understanding figurative language.

What I have also learned from my son, however, is that along with the challenges can come amazing gifts. He thinks differently; his brain works differently. He can’t tell from my voice that I’m getting angry, but he does crazy math in his head. He speaks four languages fluently, is learning two more, and composes amazing music. So, I can’t call his version of Asperger’s a disability. Rather, it’s a different ability.

  1. Why you chose to write it as the primary element of problem for Darcy?

Partly, I wanted to explore this side of Austen’s Darcy. I took her character and pushed him just a little further along the spectrum, emphasising his autistic traits rather than forcing them on him. Partly, I wanted to write a story where the hero is not perfect, but is a hero nonetheless. Darcy and Sammy are heroes not in spite of their neurological differences, but because of them. Lizzy doesn’t try to fix Darcy. She tries to help him, but she accepts and loves him for who he is.

I didn’t write this book with a strong message in mind, but I wanted to show how when we open our eyes to what’s really important, we can see all sorts of wonderful things that have been hiding right in plain sight all along.

  1. How do you get your ideas for your books?

Ideas come from all different places. Sometimes there is something in the original text that makes me think, “what if…” like how this story came about. Sometimes a small story from the history books sparks an idea, or a minor character cries out for more attention. That’s how The Assistant began—with a question about how the Gardiners met. I have two JAFF mysteries written, (but not yet published) with plans for some more, where Mary Bennet finds that sitting on the edges and watching everyone else have the fun actually makes her a pretty good detective, because she sees and hears so much.

Another unpublished novel I have sitting on my computer casts Lizzy and Darcy into a world of spies and espionage as England is at war with Napoleon’s France, and that one began with the thought, “What if Mr. Bennet wasn’t who he said he was?” There are so many sources of inspiration. They all begin with one question.

  1. What made you write at the very beginning?

I’ve always enjoyed writing, and I keep finding short stories that I wrote when I was a child. Most of them I had completely forgotten about, but they’re in my handwriting, so they must have come from my brain! About five years ago I set myself a challenge to try a full-length novel, which was a modern P&P digression, and I was more surprised than I thought when I finally completed the 100,000-word-long manuscript. It was so much fun to write, and I loved getting into the heads of my characters and watching them as they came to life and told me what they were going to do next.

This was like an addict’s first taste of something, I think. Once I’d started, I couldn’t stop. Luckily, writing isn’t so bad for my health (except when I write and don’t exercise) and it doesn’t make me a dangerous driver (except when I get so lost in thought about what will happen next), so it’s fairly harmless addiction. And if it makes other people smile, then that’s wonderful too!

And Finally, the Giveaway which I know all of you dear readers have been waiting for, namely an opportunity to win a copy of this amazing, new- sighted book.

Giveaway

I’m giving away five copies of Through a Different Lens to readers world-wide! Just sign up through the Rafflecopter widget to enter.
If you prefer not to use Rafflecopter, send me an email message (riana.everly@gmail.com) or leave a note on my Facebook page, and I’ll add you to the list for the draw.
Entries close at midnight Eastern time (GMT-5) on February 10, 2019, so the winners have something to read on Valentine’s Day.

Either put either of this links into your computer, or your phones, and you are in for a chance to win a copy of this book.

<a class=”rcptr” href=”http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/49aa98593/&#8221; rel=”nofollow” data-raflid=”49aa98593″ data-theme=”classic” data-template=”” id=”rcwidget_k0qrj5hw”>a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>

https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

If that code doesn’t work, try this link:
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/49aa98593/?

You can contact Riana, on several different platforms, including facebook and others;

Contact

Website: https://rianaeverly.com/
Blog: https://rianaeverly.com/blog/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RianaEverly/
Twitter https://twitter.com/RianaEverly
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Riana-Everly

And lastly, Riana, have been so kind as to afford us a view into her book, through an excerpt;

(Darcy is accompanying Lizzy and her young cousins on an excursion to the park. Twelve-year-old Sammy has formed a wonderful connection with Darcy’s dog Cabal, but he doesn’t do so well with unpredictable pigeons! )

By now they had reached the pond, which was indeed brilliant with a thousand spangles of reflected light. As the children watched their boats sail across the sparkling water, Elizabeth began to wish that she, too, was in possession of a pair of tinted spectacles, for the glare off the water was distracting in its intensity! But the children seemed not to be bothered in the slightest, and even Samuel laughed and dashed about with a carefree smile upon his face that seemed quite unaffected by the brightness. His boat lost to his brother’s, but he contented himself by holding onto Cabal’s lead and scratching the hound’s head at intervals, to the apparent pleasure of both boy and dog.

When the experiment with the boats was complete, Miss Pierce lived up to her promise and handed small sacks of seed to the younger Gardiner children. Lizzy and Mr. Darcy chatted lightly with the governess as the children tossed the seeds to the waiting pigeons and waterfowl, at first one piece at a time, and then as their excitement grew, in greater quantities. Through this, Samuel stood aside under the shade of one of the large trees, lush with the bright green foliage of ripe springtime, one hand holding Cabal’s lead, the other resting on the dog’s furred head, as the beast sat calmly at his side.

“How well they get along together!” Lizzy directed Mr. Darcy’s attention to the pair—boy and dog—in the shade of the tree, just a step away from the noisy children and the hungry birds, and yet a world apart. “I must talk to my aunt again to see if a pet dog could fit into the household. Perhaps you will have some advice for her on the best breeds. I imagine he would do better with one that is large and calm rather than an active sort of a pet.”

“Indeed, Miss Bennet. I have some definite thoughts on the matter, and if she wishes, can inquire about a pup from one of the breeders in Derby—”

His thought was cut short by a great cry from the direction of the pond. Little Julia, in her exuberance and joy, had flung a great handful of seed into the air whilst spinning on her feet as small children are wont to do. Instead of landing at the edge of the pond, as she had surely expected, some of the seeds fell instead by Samuel, and some even ended up in his hair.

The pigeons, quite unconcerned as to where their food landed, began rushing towards the pair in the shade in a flurry of feathers and beaks and loud caws. Sammy’s eyes widened in horror as the birds descended upon him. Some landed inches from his feet, pecking at the seeds on the grass before him; others had seen or smelled the kernels in his hair and flapped about his head. “No!” he cried, waving his hands about him. “No, no, no!”

The wild motion of his hands scattered the flock for a moment, but the damage had been done. Samuel’s voice rang with panic, and as Lizzy watched, his eyes lost focus as he continued to cry out against the aborted attack of feathered fiends. He continued to flail wildly as he shouted, seemingly unaware of his surroundings.

“Miss Elizabeth, watch the children.” Lizzy barely heard Miss Pierce’s voice. It had a been so long a time since last she had witnessed her cousin so distressed that she was quite in shock. Beside her, she sensed rather than observed Mr. Darcy’s similar reaction. He stood perfectly still, eyes fixed unblinking upon her poor cousin and the effects of the trauma caused by the birds.

She blinked. Miss Pierce had spoken, had needed her. “Yes, yes of course! The children.” She gathered the youngsters about her, all three of them wrapped within the circle of her arms. Julia was now crying as well. “I made Sammy sad! I didn’t wanna make him sad. I’m sorry!” The little girl wept, leaving wet stains on Elizabeth’s walking dress and tearing at the flowers on her bonnet.

 

Thank you for reading, guys! Good luck Guys in the giveaway! And thank you for reading another piece of my blog entries. Wish me luck for my exams!
Until next time, Cheers!